Yesterday evening, the BBC agreed a deal with the coalition government that will see the current £145.50 licence fee frozen up to the renewal of the BBC's Royal Charter in 2017.
Under the agreement, the BBC will assume responsibility for funding World Service and "make a contribution" to the £100m annual budget of Welsh-language channel S4C.
However, the corporation managed to avoid taking on the £556m annual cost of providing free TV licences for the over-75s as previously mooted by MPs.
Sir Michael Lyons, the outgoing BBC Trust chairman, said that the "tough" settlement is necessary at such an "unprecedented time" of financial difficulties.
He noted that the settlement will "present us with some difficult choices", as the additional obligations will add around £340m a year to the BBC's budget, requiring significant savings.
Lyons said an important aspect is that these choices "remain firmly in the hands of the BBC Trust", thus safeguarding the corporation's independence.
"Having considered the details and the circumstances carefully, the Trust believes that this settlement, which reaffirms the corporation's operational and editorial independence, is in the best interests of licence fee payers who will continue to benefit from the high quality services they expect from the BBC," said Lyons.
"It brings with it new obligations for the BBC, but importantly they are all obligations that are relevant to the BBC's mission and purpose - to be a public service broadcaster of the highest quality that serves all audiences.
"In particular the new arrangements will ensure that the World Service remains a vibrant, independent service that brings impartial news to people around the world, while strengthening the BBC's ability to bring international news to UK licence fee payers."
He added: "The settlement also seeks to secure the long-term future of broadcasting in the Welsh language through the extension of a partnership with S4C. The BBC is not government funded, but these are pressing times for the nation as a whole, and we believe licence fee payers would expect us to see what contribution we can properly make.
"The extra responsibilities the BBC will now take on are consistent with this and will deliver benefits to licence fee payers across the UK."
BBC director-general Mark Thompson added: "This is a realistic deal in exceptional circumstances securing a strong independent BBC for the next six years.
"It means that efficiency and reform will continue to be key issues for us. But our focus remains providing distinctive, high quality programmes valued by the public. This deal will safeguard that until 2017."
However, the S4C Authority today said that it will launch a judicial review of the government's decision to "effectively merge" the Welsh-language broadcaster with the BBC.